Ease of operation and simplicity are two reasons why Dr. Karl Rogers of Nashville, TN loves his two Schweiss bifold liftstrap/autolatch hangar doors. They are among the standout features on the doctor's private hangar, which stands behind his vacation home at the Big South Fork Airpark in Oneida, TN.
Rogers and his wife Connie are both pilots. When planning their vacation home getaway the couple's priorities included being able to spend time with fellow aviation enthusiasts and being close to their airplane. Their goals were met with the decision to build at the Big South Fork Airpark in Oneida. The airpark is next to the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, and its 125,000 acres of national park land.
The Rogers' vacation home hangar is a 60’ x 50’ steel building with 48'-wide Schweiss doors on each side. The hangar sits behind their home and has direct access to the airpark taxiway.
The doors are equipped with automatic latches, walk doors and remote openers.
“We activate the door when getting close so it is open to where we can taxi right into the hangar without having to stop and wait for it,” said Rogers.
Rogers shopped other door manufacturers but settled on Schweiss with no regrets.
“Schweiss is regarded as having the premier door in the hangar market and it has become obvious as to why. It is incredible — the ease and simplicity of their operation, the doors open smoothly and relatively quiet. You truly have a product that operates better than expected,” he said.
The home and hangar were built by Chris Donald of Carolina Contractors, Inc. The contractor handled the installation of the hangar doors as well. He had some experience with Schweiss, having once installed one of the company's hydraulic doors, but never one of their bifolds. With support from the company, the installation went smoothly.
"I called Jeremy (at Schweiss Doors) a few times before and during the installation and he was quite helpful," said Donald. "The doors with the straps and remote are very nice.”
Doors from Schweiss can be the standout feature on any hangar. But on Dr. Rogers' vacation home hangar they have to share the spotlight with a carousel in the center of the floor that turns the plane around so it can be driven out.
“We had the foresight to install a carousel to position the plane for easy entrance and exit, never having to tug it. It can be operated remotely as well, which adds another level of convenience,” explained Rogers.
The carousel calls into question the need for a second hangar door. But the doctor had several reasons for adding it. He decided on a second door for the back of the hangar for better airflow, especially during the warmer months, and so he could see his plane from the house. There’s also a small paved apron behind the is hangar so he can pull his plane out and wash it outside.
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Click to see the hangar's turntable in action.
As for the carousel, that was planned from the start.
“We knew about the carousel before we started construction so we planned for it with the slab," said Donald. "The most difficult part of the carousel was prepping the pad for it. Other than that it was pretty straightforward. It’s quiet and a fun feature to have.”
About Big South Fork Airpark
Big South Fork Airpark is a residential fly-in community that intertwines lifestyle and beautiful living for aviators. In a casual, rustic setting, aviation enthusiasts have the exclusive opportunity to live in a high-quality home only seconds away from their plane and runway.
Big South Fork Airpark, started by the Pegasus Group, opened to residents in July 2008. It occupies 400 acres, including land subdivided for houses and personal hangars, stables for horses, and equestrian riding trails. The airpark is host to the Wings Over Big South Fork air show every year in September. Attractions include shows by well-known aviators and a collection of airplanes from eras ranging from World War I to modern fighter jets.
To learn more about bifold doors like the one used on this project, visitwww.bifold.com.